Quebec Will Require COVID Vaccine to Buy Cannabis and Alcohol

Starting January 18, Quebec will require proof of vaccination from COVID-19 in order to purchase cannabis and alcohol in the province.

Full story after the jump.

The Canadian province of Quebec, Canada last week implemented a rule requiring COVID-19 vaccinations for individuals seeking to buy cannabis or alcohol which led to a quadrupling of first-dose vaccination appointments in the day following the rule change, Newsweek reports.

When the requirement was announced last Thursday, the province was averaging around 1,500 vaccine appointments a day. On Friday, Quebec Health Minister Christian Dubé announced that the number had jumped to about 6,000.

“Yes, this is very difficult right now. But we are [taking] all the measures, [to] make sure that we minimize the impact on our personnel, on our system.” Dubé via Newsweek

The requirement takes effect on January 18. Quebec residents are already required to show proof of vaccination at places like healthcare facilities, sports venues, movie theaters, bars, and clubs. There are some exemptions for adults and children under 13-years-old.

In Quebec, the alcohol and cannabis retailers are government-run by the Societe des alcools du Quebec (SAQ) and Societe quebecoise du cannabis (SQDC), respectively.

The new rule comes as Quebec’s seven-day average for new coronavirus cases was around 40,000 when the rule was introduced last week an increase from around 3,000 cases the month prior. Quebec is home to Montreal, Canada’s second-biggest city by population. The province’s vaccine rate is near 80%.

“If the unvaccinated aren’t happy with this situation, there is a very simple solution at your disposal,” Dubé said during the press conference making the announcement. “It is to get vaccinated. It’s free.”

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